Post # 1
So my beau and I are planning a Sept-Oct, 2011 wedding and while my parents are giving us money towards the wedding, we want our wedding to be an event of a lifetime (it only happens ONCE!). I am looking to other, more financially savvy bees for advice. I don’t make very much money, as I am working a civil service job as a case manager. My beau just started working in real estate. We have an apartment and a dog that we pay for, as well as credit card debt we accrued (together) since we have been living together over the past 4 years.
Do any bees have any saving/money making advice so that I can build up a little nest to put towards the wedding budget? I will honestly take any idea! Let’s see how creative everyone is!!
Post # 3
I got a great amount back from my taxes and honestly it was exactly the amount I wanted to contribute plus some so I put it aside. I think M will be saving a monthly amount to contribute his portion and my mom told us her contribution and basically is taken care of all of the smaller numbers plus the smaller deposits and making monthly payments to the vendors…
Post # 4
I actually picked up a second job and freelance jobs. I work full-time and got a second job picking up about 12-15 hours a week. It’s not a lot of time, but I make about an extra $600 a month, most of which is going towards wedding savings. I also do freelance jobs, which are not as frequent, but the extra money is nice. Yes, I am working my a** off, but it’s nice to know that we won’t be going into debt or putting any wedding related expenses on a credit card.
Post # 4
I put aside a certain amount every month after taking care of all of my monthly expenses in my wedding account. My Fiance also adds money into a savings account to use towards the wedding. Therefore, neither of us are maxing out credit cards to pay for wedding stuff because we started saving as soon as we were engaged.
Post # 5
We took what we had in savings and put it into a money market account. It’s like a checking account but it earns interest if you are above the minimum balance. We get extra money every month by just leaving that money sitting there! I would go to your bank and check out their current interest rates and see what type of account (money market, CD, whatever!) Will earn you the most bang for your buck. Personally, we went with the money market b/c you can deposit/withdrawal money as you please. We’ve only been depositing, but it’s nice have it when we need to make deposits to your vendors! We’ve also cut out little things like starbucks, fast food, and we don’t eat out very often. We COULD afford to do these things, but we’re saving a lot of money by not doing them!
Post # 6
We did this:
My parents gave us money right after we got engaged. They wanted us to have all the money up front, so they wrote us one big check. Since we knew we would be engaged for almost 2 years, we put that money into a CD for 20 months and made a BIG chunk of change on it!
Then, we determined our budget and decided to save up for the rest of it ourselves. To do that, we had a certain amount automatically deducted from our paychecks each week and put into a new savings account that we opened. This way we didn’t have the choice of whether to set the money aside – it was automatically set aside for us.
Later, my parents surprised us by picking up some extras that they didn’t tell us they were doing…so that was a nice surprise and gave us extra money to play with (we bought some extras on our honeymoon) 🙂
Post # 7
Here are some of the little things I have done to bump up our savings:
#1 – look into stockpiling food and cutting coupons from your sunday newspaper. I cut our grocery bill from $120 a week to between 65 and 75 by buying in bulk when stuff is on sale and I have a coupon for it. Put the extra money in a separate savings account that is interest bearing but not money market. I don’t want you to lose your savings if we have the lull that people are afraid of.
#2 – cut the cable and think about netflix and hulu. Most cable shows that you think you will miss are available online, but you can save a good chunk of change every month by doing so.
#3 – If you eat out try eating in more often.
#4 – check your insurance rates with other companies. I saved us 500/year switching on our house insurance. Although that was an extreme case (we were totally getting screwed), I think you could really benefit from maybe even combining your insurances.
#5 – Combine cell phone plans if you haven’t already and it makes sense financially to do so.
Post # 8
We opened up a savings account which we contribute $400 a month (or $200 a paycheque – total, so $100 per paycheque each). Since we have a while to save for the wedding, this will create quite a nice sum. We plan on contributing a bit more after we get our student debt paid down.
You have lots of time to save. I would pick an amount you feel is possible and put that away, no exceptions, every pay!
Post # 9
Well, you definitely have time on your side:-) Our engagement was 1 yr and 9 months long, we wanted to have enough time to save. We set a budget, I picked up a part-time gig and along the way family picked up the tab for flowers, transportation, etc.
Post # 10
When we first got engaged, we had our own savings which was not that big but could pay for the wedding. Then, we decided to buy a house. Oh boy, we nearly wiped ourselves clean. When we got the house, we decided to open a joint account where our mortgage and other monthly bills are gonna be paid from. We put in money into the account more than our projected monthly expenses so before we knew it, we had money saved up already. The amount that we put in every month never varies and it was never the “whatever-is-left” money. We do it every first of the month. We never use that joint account for other things, other than our monthly mortgage and gas and power bills, and the occasional new kitchen appliance.
I think that if you really want to save, automatic saving is the key. Saving money without even thinking about it 🙂
Post # 11
have it taken out of your check first! my company lets me split my direct deposit so I set up a new account and have money auto filtered into it, then we just sort of pretend it isn’t there. if you never see the money you don’t miss it as much.
Post # 12
i am definitely no expert, so take this with a grain of salt, but i’ve seen several articles in magazines lately about saving etc.
everyone’s suggestions are great, and i’ve also seen recommendations to completely pay down your credit card debt before starting to save — that way you are not paying tons and tons of interest down the line. if you google something like “personal finanaces advice” you’ll find a ton of sites with very concrete suggestions for reducing your expenses!
Post # 13
oh also i made a spreadsheet that is pretty cool, I added all our expenses down the side then it takes how much we want to spend, subtracts what is paid for, and how much we have in savings, and then every time you open it it recalculates the date and tells you how much you have to save per month to have it all paid off one month before the wedding date I entered.
It was sort of nice to see our budget that way, because I could see how the things I wanted to have were impacting me monthly. It was really easy to say, honey if we got rid of netflicks we could have the big perfect cake. or no, having a photobooth means eating ramen from now till the wedding, so it’s gotta go.
edit- I just realized my extreme nerdyness because I just called a spreadsheet cool. lol
Post # 14
Our approach is a bit different than most others, but I got a very intense but high paying job to finance the wedding. I work 70+ hours a week, which isn’t fun, but it lets us save for the wedding and have enough left for for retirements savings, expenses, and occasional splurges. If there’s any way you can work more (either at a second job or a harder but higher paying primary job) I think that’s the easiest way. Increasing your intake of $$ is easier than cutting expenses if you’re already living frugally. Plus, if you’re going to stop going out to eat and doing other expensive activities during the engagement anyway, you might as well take advantage of all that free time by working more.
Post # 15
@vistagirl, don’t worry, i think spreadsheets are cool too!
@vanilla frosting, i have my contribution automatically taken out. it’s pretty much the minimum that i can put aside so that i have enough money to take care of all my other bills. automatic savings are great for that. also, i eat in or bring my own lunch to work to save some cash and try to keep my casual spending down, so no frequent trips to starbucks or anything for me. also, if i come into some extra cash, like from a tax refund, i’ll funnel some of the cash to all my savings accounts . good luck!